THIRD WAVE CAFE

I’m no expert on Russian food, but I’m certainly fascinated by it. To the extent of my knowledge, the food consists mostly of hearty stews, stodgy dumplings, and plenty of meat – cold weather food essentially. But opportunities for trying Russian food in Melbourne are pretty thin on the ground (though a quick search did turn up a place called Gandalf Restaurant), so it was pretty exciting to be invited by Third Wave Cafe to try out their Russian-inspired menu.
Sister restaurant to the cafe of the same name in St Kilda, Third Wave is a very new addition to Prahran. It’s a long, bright space that is cosy in winter, and I imagine airy in summer. The menu reads like a novel, but on top of the regular cafe food and promised Russian-inspired dishes, there were also some American BBQ plates on offer, which had us hooked from the get-go.

Hot Chocolate ($4.5)/Cinnamon Chai Latte ($4.5)
Is it just me, or are we not going to get a spring this year? Completely disregarding the fact that it’s mid-November, Melbourne is less flowers and hay-fever, and more chilling draughts and eternally damp clothing (and hay-fever). But there is one up-side – it makes Hot Chocolate ($4.5) and Cinnamon Chai Latte ($4.5) go down a treat. Our drinks came in big, huggable cups, and I loved the frothiness of the milk, and the copious amounts of cinnamon sugar on my chai. 
Texan Fry Up ($18.4)
Is 11:30 in the morning too early for beef ribs? Regrettably we decided that it probably was, so we made-do with the Texan Fry Up ($18.4), a very cowboy-ish brunch of beef brisket, kiefler potatoes, and butter mushrooms. 

Texan Fry Up ($18.4)
Texan Fry Up ($18.4)
This was one huge plate of smoky-fried goodness, the succulent brisket and fluffy potatoes soaking up the tingly BBQ sauce, of which there was more on the side if you just can’t get enough of it. It was a supremely satisfying (and filling) meal to start the day with. 

Meat Pelmeni ($15.9)
And of course, the traditional Russian Meat Pelmeni ($15.9), aka their take on the dumpling. These stodgy little parcels were the size of ravioli, and filled with herbed mince meat. Whilst I’m not usually a fan of sour cream, I actually really enjoyed them with the pelmeni. The tangy creaminess of it, together with the grassy dill, made the dumplings elegant not dull. 

Cherry Cheese Blintzes ($15.9)
After sitting around for a good half hour, digesting and reading the notes for my exam, the waitress talked us into having some dessert. Having seen quite a few people wax lyrical about it, I decided to try the Cherry Cheese Blintzes ($15.9).  

Cherry Cheese Blintzes ($15.9)
What started off as buxom little parcels of tender crepes revealed a treasure trove. Served with organic blueberry jam on the side, these cool pillows were an intoxicating combination of eggy pancakes, and a honeyed yet tart filling of smooth cream cheese and plump, alcohol-soaked cherries. 

I admit I walked into Third Wave Cafe feeling a little apprehensive, but what appeared to be a run-of-the-mill cafe turned out to be a restaurant with great personality and even greater food. I would absolutely love to come back for the dry-spice-rubbed pork ribs. With such hearty meals to be had, I guess winter can stay a little longer.
Rating: 15/20 – buxom russian treats.
This rating reflects my personal experience at the time of visit.
Sweet and Sour Fork dined as a guest of Third Wave Cafe.

Third Wave on Urbanspoon

American  Brunch  Cafe  European  Just A Bit Special ($15-$30)  Prahran  Russian  Victoria 



Comments (2)


  • Sally Li

    on 27 November 2013 @ 05:39 am:

    you got three pictures of the same thing. how did that happen?


    • ming

      on 27 November 2013 @ 07:07 am:

      Ahh well I loved how the dish looked (and tasted) so much that I decided to get a few extra snaps, then couldn't decide which to use ;)

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